The bill amending the Cameroonian penal code that was adopted in the National Assembly on Saturday has generated angry protest in the nation’s capital Yaounde. Cameroonian MPs of the ruling CPDM party adopted the new penal code which contains 372 items. Cameroon Intelligence Report understands the controversial text is now before the Senate where it should be adopted today Wednesday by the Upper House dominated by Senators from the ruling party.
The so called new Cameroonian penal code has been the subject of intense debate within the national territory. The Bar Association of Cameroon and opposition parties have challenged the document and asked for a consensus text. In response, the Government indicated that a consensus had been found around the new penal code.
The Department of Justice and other defenders of the new penal code have specified that the text was drafted with the participation and the involvement of different actors including legal practitioners: Lawyers, notaries, bailiffs, law teachers, traditional leaders, members of civil society and political party leaders-a position that has been rejected out rightly by the Vice Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon. Joseph Mbah Ndam.
Some experts have opined that the 50 years old Cameroonian penal code was badly in need of some modifications. Our source at the Ministry of Justice hinted the new Penal Code is a long process where Cameroon has integrated the laws coming from international agreements.
Soter Tarh Agbaw-Ebai (CIR)